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After 26 weeks and more than 4,000 entries, it was time to decide on the winners of our travel photography competition in conjunction with The Sunday Times. Picking a victor was a tough task for the judges: The Sunday Times’s chief portrait photographer, Francesco Guidicini; the editor of Travel, Stephen Bleach; and Jim Millward. Here are their winners.


Four on a bike, night market, Kolkata, India by George Turnbull

The standout winner is George Turnbull, for his brightly coloured snapshot of a freewheeling family in Calcutta.

“It’s the first picture in the shortlist I noticed — a beautiful image.” Francesco said. Stephen added: “I love the woman’s expression and the spontaneity. For a night shot, it’s also technically very good.” George wins a 17-day break for two in New Zealand.


James Field-Mitchell attempting a difficult route at White Falls, Mount Ruapehu, New Zealand by Joshua Windsor

In second, pipped at the post, was the blood-pumping aerial image by Joshua Windsor of a white-knuckle climb on Mount Ruapehu, New Zealand.

“This gives you vertigo just looking at it.” Jim said. “Taking a special shot in a difficult situation is a real feat.” Francesco agreed. Joshua wins a 13-day trip for two to Costa Rica.


Magellanic penguin nest building, Sea Lion Island, The Falkland Islands by David Potter

David Potter’s snapshot of a Magellanic penguin busy nest-building on windswept Sea Lion Island, in the Falklands, was a close third.

“You see so many photos of penguins, but this one is different — it made me laugh.” Jim said. “It captures a side to the birds that’s rarely seen.” David wins a 13-day trip for two to India.

Congratulations to the winners, and our thanks to all who entered.

Weekly winners

This week's winner, taken by Liam Oakes

The migration. Mui Ne, Vietnam

Taken by Liam Oakes

The photo was taken in Vietnam during a month long stay there in February. I was walking up the fairy stream (Suoi Tien) in Mui Ne when a herd of cows came towards us, weaving their way through the tourists with the farmer following behind. It was a spontaneous shot I honestly didn't expect to get, I was heading up stream to take photos of the waterfall at the top. The image was captured using my Fujifilm X-Pro1 with the XF27mm lens, the settings used were ISO 250, 1/125 sec at f14.

This week's winner, taken by Susan Winkworth

'Casting the Net', Yangshuo on the Li River, China

Taken by Susan Winkworth

The Picture was taken on a Canon 5D Mk3, with a 24-105 lens. The challenge was to take the photo as the net framed the fisherman. This is a busy river so I was lucky to get into a position to capture the decisive moment.

This week's winner, taken by James Warner

Sea turtle, Perhentian Islands, Malaysia

Taken by James Warner

Whilst snorkeling I noticed one of the local turtles resting beneath me on the sea bed. After a while it raised itself and came right at me in pursuit of some fresh oxygen, allowing me to capture the ascent and get a much better look at these magnificent creatures.

This week's winner, taken by Paul Watson

Young monk, Yangon, Burma (Myanmar)

Taken by Paul Watson

The idea behind the image was a monk at the beginning of a journey on the path to enlightenment. After composing a perspective shot of the timber walkway to frame anyone that walked down it, I waited for the right subject to come along. I used a low aperture to create a shallow depth of field to layer the image and focus the viewer's attention on the boy.

This week's winner, taken by Hazel Arnold

'Catch me if you can'

Taken by Hazel Arnold

I took the photograph on a Panasonic Bridge Camera, FZ330. We have been to Kenya several times and were taught from day one to have the camera ready. This was indeed an opportune moment but my success is due to the skills and knowledge of one of our three driver/guides from Kicheche Bush Camp. We had been watching the cheetahs, three sub adults and their mum, for a short time, and our guide positioned his vehicle such that when the chase began, we were in the perfect place.

This week's winner, taken by Steve Bradshaw

White bird on snow peak, Khumbu Valley, Everest Base Camp Trek, Nepal

Taken by Steve Bradshaw

I captured this cloud formation which existed for just a few seconds, without much imagination a giant long tailed white bird has landed on a distant snow capped peak, I can even see a second bird gliding in from the right.

This week's winner, taken by Todor Tilev

Reflected glory

Taken by Todor Tilev

The picture was taken at Três Irmão beach, between Portimao and Alvor in the Algarve. I left the sunglasses on the rocks and took a picture of the reflections on the sunglasses. To avoid my own reflection I had to take the picture from about 45 degrees from below the sunglasses.

This week's winner, taken by Rogier van der Ouderaa

Hummingbird, Costa Rica

Taken by Rogier van der Ouderaa

I wanted to capture the swift delicacy of the hummingbird's wings contrasting with the shimmering iridescence of its plumage. The lush green foliage made a nice contrasting background to the vibrant tropical flower which leads your gaze to the hovering hummingbird.

This week's winner, taken by David Hully

County Antrim, Northern Ireland

Taken by David Hully

Modern technology versus the Kingsroad from Game of Thrones, otherwise known as The Dark Hedges in County Antrim, Northern Ireland.

This week's winner, taken by George Warner

Child learning to walk, Mabul Island, Borneo

Taken by George Warner

Children from the village on the island use the sea as their playground. From my dive resort I could see and hear them every morning at low tide. A high vantage point provided an opportunity to capture this moment as one of the smaller villagers took her first underwater steps.

This week's winner, taken by Sam Bennett

Scaling the heights at Pico Ruivo, Madeira

Taken by Sam Bennett

This photograph was taken using a Canon 5D MKIII with a Canon 16-35mm f4 IS lens, shutter speed of 1/200 second and Aperture of f11, ISO 200. I saw an opportune moment when scaling the heights of Pico Ruivo, Madeira, one of the most challenging hikes I have ever done. As a walking party ventured ahead I paused to catch my breath and to take in the majestic scene; the group ahead provided a sense of scale against the rugged backdrop.

This week's winner, taken by Helen Bennett

Sunbaked Arizona

Taken by Helen Bennett

My husband and I were making the long drive from central Arizona into Utah on our honeymoon when we suddenly realised the road we had planned to take was closed. Fortunately for us, I don't think we could have asked for a more spectacular detour. I asked my husband to make a quick pit stop so that I could jump out and capture that moment before the landscape changed again.

This week's winner, taken by Nick Dale

Brooks Falls, Alaska

Taken by Nick Dale

Every July, a million salmon return from the pacific to their spawning grounds on the Brooks River in Alaska, and the local brown bears gather to catch them. Catching the fish as they jump the waterfall is the most spectacular thing to watch. When people ask how long it took to take this picture, I tell them, depending on how you look at it, either 1/1000 of a second or a week.

This week's winner, taken by Ben Fairclough

Railay Beach, Thailand

Taken by Ben Fairclough

I was captivated by the karst scenery, I noticed this angle which captures the rock faces but also ties the photo to the location by showing the long-tail boats. I was using an old DSLR (Canon 40D) with a kit lens and a polarising filter to help bring out the blue sky and reduce the reflections from the water.

This week's winner, taken by Sandy Stockwell

Iguana, Tamarindo, Costa Rica

Taken by Sandy Stockwell

Costa Rica is a paradise for photographers as wildlife is prolific. Resembling a small dinosaur, the native green iguanas were regularly seen dozing on branches. This one sat patiently while I took a series of images. I wanted to capture the detail of its scales and spines and the beautiful, subtle changes in colour. I took the image on a Pentax K50, using a 55-300mm lens, at 300mm.

This week's winner, taken by David Potter

Magellanic penguin nest building, Sea Lion Island, The Falkland Islands.

Taken by David Potter

I was spending some time photographing Magellanic penguins in the Falkland Islands during the early evening. It was cloudy and the light was just starting to gradually fade so I had increased the ISO settings. I was starting to think about going back to the lodge when this one suddenly appeared struggling to carry this nest material.

This week's winner, taken by Roger Clark

Early morning spots in Namibia

Taken by Roger Clark

We set off at sunrise, the perfect time for a game drive with the increasing light and animal sounds. We travelled along many tracks with no luck but after an hour or so, the driver had to do an emergency stop. Then we watched as a cheetah appeared in the road, followed by two young cheetahs emerging from the grass.

This week's winner, taken by Brian McCready

Early morning winter sun over Slieve Bearnagh, Northern Ireland

Taken by Brian McCready

I walked for nearly two hours in the dark to the summit of Slieve Bearnagh, with just a head torch to light the route. Once there, I remained on the summit for a couple of hours, taking a series of images as the sun rose behind the rocky tor. The atmospheric clouds continuously passing overhead were a bonus as they added to the drama of the scene.

This week's winner, taken by George Turnbull

Four on a bike, night market, Kolkata, India

Taken by George Turnbull

My wife and I were staying in Kolkata in India and one evening I was out looking for street scenes to photograph, when I happened to come across this family on a motorbike. There was little time to take the picture, it wasn’t posed, and the smile on the older lady’s face is what makes it special.

This week's winner, taken by Dominic Burdon

Light beams in a Marrakesh market, Morocco

Taken by Dominic Burdon

I took this picture at a market in Marrakesh on a long honeymoon this summer. I noticed a series of light beams breaking through the smoke while out exploring the numerous back alleys, so I hunted around for the best angle to capture the scene. The moment seemed perfect as this man gave me a big smile and rode on past me.

This week's winner, taken by Jo Kearney

Nomads, Kyrgyzstan

Taken by Jo Kearney

I spent a few days photographing the nomads around the Song Kul Lake in Kyrgyzstan earlier this year with my Nikon D800. While I was taking photographs, this family kindly invited me for tea in their yurt. They were more than happy to be photographed and their daughter even changed into a party dress.

This week's winner, taken by Steve Bradshaw

Mountain gorilla

Taken by Steve Bradshaw

Following our machete wielding guides, we found our group of eastern mountain gorillas after a couple of hours of tough climbing. We were rewarded with the privilege of seeing a family of gorillas, including twin babies, an experience that I found very emotional. I took the shot with an EOS 500D and 70-300 zoom set at full 300mm.

This week's winner, taken by Joshua Windsor

James Field-Mitchell attempting a difficult route at White Falls, Mount Ruapehu, New Zealand

Taken by Joshua Windsor

This photo was taken at White Falls, a newly developed climbing spot on the slopes of Mount Ruapehu on the North Island of New Zealand. To get an interesting vantage point above the climber, I had to set up an abseil from the top of the cliff. I'm a lot closer to the climber than it appears thanks to the optical effects of a wide-angle lens.

This week's winner, taken by Chris Mole

Driftwood, Ffryes Beach, Antigua

Taken by Chris Mole

Due to the slope of the beach it’s really difficult to get a decent photo of the waves breaking over the driftwood. You have to get very close and trust in your ability to pull the camera away from the waves just in time. This photo was taken from a couple of feet away, with a Canon 7D with a 13mm wide angle lens setting at 1/6400 sec shutterspeed.

This week's winner, taken by Alison Morris

Pushkar Camel Fair, Rajasthan

Taken by Alison Morris

I took the photo on the outskirts of Pushkar in Rajasthan, at the annual Pushkar Camel Fair. The camels are herded in each day from the local villages and I had to be on site early in the morning through to dusk to capture the image. It was taken with a Canon 5D Mk ii and a 70-300 mm lens at 140 mm. I used 400 ISO at f8.0 with a fairly fast shutter speed of 1/320ths of a second.

This week's winner, taken by Lynette Clarke

Yacare caiman, Pantanal, Brazil

Taken by Lynette Clarke

My photograph was taken with a Canon EOS 70D and a 70-200 Canon lens. ISO was 500 and f 5.6 which gave me 1/800. We were going up a small creek when this magnificent creature was on the bank, we watched as he gently moved the fish into his mouth. I took a couple of shots with his eyes shut and then he opened them and just looked straight at me.